How to Make Money While in College – 7 Easy Ideas

by James Sowers | Last Updated:  March 16, 2021

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It’s no secret that college can be wildly expensive. Even with scholarships and grants, you still have to worry about food, car payments, gas, housing, books, and so many other things. Even little expenses add up quickly. Plus, it’s not always easy to make money in college. On-campus jobs are limited and finding a work-study program isn’t a guarantee.

If the debt is piling up and you’re starting to panic, wondering how you can start making money, take a few deep breaths and keep reading. Today, I’m going to show you some ways to earn extra money as a college student without getting a part-time job and missing your valuable study time!

1. Be a Food Delivery Freelancer

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What is one thing that everyone needs? Food. Not only do people need it but they also want it without having to cook or travel. That means there are plenty of opportunities to be a delivery driver. But for some college students, being tied to a part-time job as a delivery person means that you have set hours and a boss who can fire you if you have to skip out to study too many times. As a college student, it can be hard to earn money on someone else’s schedule.

Luckily, that isn’t something you have to deal with anymore! With the rise in popularity of apps like Uber Eats, Postmates, and DoorDash, you can earn extra cash by delivering for local fast-food on your own time. You work when you want to and earn money with hourly pay with tips. The benefits don’t stop there. You can also expect:

You can quit any time to focus on school and all you need is your car, license, phone, and a positive attitude.

2. Do Odd Jobs

If you have a marketable skill that you can use to make other people’s lives easier, you only have to look to your app store to turn your talents into cash. You aren’t limited to being a food delivery person! With apps and sites like Fiverr and TaskRabbit, you can advertise your services to a wide array of people.

TaskRabbit connects those in need of service to:

… and many more! If you enjoy working with your hands and helping people in your spare time, you can make money (and someone’s day) by joining the app’s directory to earn extra cash.

On Fiverr, you can get cash for doing almost anything from writing to graphic design to being a virtual assistant. There is a world of possibilities as long as you have the skills needed to get the job done. Do be aware that Fiverr takes 20% of your profits so what you charge for your services should be adjusted so you still get the money you need even after that 20% is gone.

3. Sell Your Art

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Many college students make art or craft things as a way to relax after the stress of classes. As it turns out, this creative hobby can generate lots of cash! There are several places online where you can advertise and sell your creations, including:

You can set up your own shop where people peruse all of your uniquely beautiful items. Then, market your Etsy shop on Facebook or Instagram then ship orders and reap the rewards! The only difficult part is finding a place in your dorm room to store everything.

4. Rent Your Room

If you are one of the lucky college students not roughing it in a dorm and you have an extra room to spare, rent it out for a few days! You can sign up to be a host with Airbnb, opening your door to travelers looking for a place to rest before they hit the town.

Though you can rent out your room without the help of an app, Airbnb makes it easy to find trustworthy people who won’t totally trash the place while you’re off studying hard.

5. Cancel Your Subscriptions

It’s a safe bet that most people subscribe to at least two different services for streaming movies and music or getting cool mystery boxes in the mail every month. There are hundreds of subscription-based services to choose from and all of them start out being highly affordable. This approach is not exactly a side job but you just quickly jump online, assess your subscriptions, and cancel what you can to save cash.

If there are any services you can afford to let go of, unsubscribe to save money! Think of it as passive income. You could potentially save hundreds of dollars that you were shelling out for things you don’t really get to enjoy.

6. Take Surveys

When you’re out in public with nothing to do but scroll social media or watch YouTube endlessly on your phone, you could get rid of your boredom and earn a little cash by taking some easy surveys! There are plenty of survey sites out there that pay you to simply give your opinions and talk about products that you like.

To get started, check out these websites and apps:

While these surveys won’t make you a lot of money, they’re a great way to earn some pocket change by tapping buttons. What could be easier than that?

7. Walk Dogs

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College students miss a lot of comforts of home when they move into a dorm and owning a pet is one of them. You can still pet puppies and play with a fluffy friend when you become a professional dog walker!

Not only will you earn money but you’ll also have your spirits lifted on particularly bad days. Who can resist the infectious high energy that dogs bring to any interaction? If you need both a financial and emotional pick-me-up, be a dog walker.

You can do this on your own or through Rover or Wag! These apps connect you to dog owners in need of assistance and you come away from the experience happier and with a padded wallet. College is expensive and eating ramen noodles for every meal gets boring. Make some extra cash doing what you love or simply cutting out what you don’t from your budget.

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Meet The Author

Hey there! I'm James Sowers, and I run things around here. My mission is to create 1,000 self-sustaining entrepreneurs...and I'd love for you to be one of them! Have thoughts on this article? Reach out on Twitter and let me know.